Health Insurance is a Misnomer, it’s Still Medical Insurance
What is Health Insurance?
Let’s start with the big picture first, beginning with a little history. What we now know as “health” insurance first started off as hospitalization. School teachers in 1929 paid $6 a year for hospitalization coverage to the hospitals in the Dallas, TX area. These dollars were paid directly to the hospitals. This was a reliable source of income for the hospitals because people rarely needed hospital care. Think “in case something happens.” So far so good.
Insurance companies liked what they saw the hospitals doing and eventually adopted providing hospital coverage into their list of products they sold. But like a lot of things, what started off with one intent and purpose, soon became a vehicle for our federal government to get involved, and eventually take greater and greater control. Around the time of WWII, the federal government took greater control of our economy and put a freeze on wages. However, they allowed employers to offer non-taxable employer sponsored medical insurance. As a result, this became cheaper than private paid insurance for individuals, and this trend then began, and continues to this day. In my book “Are You Being Deceived About True Wellness” I talk about how if you were piloting an airplane or a ship, you would set your coordinates before you started so you would end up where you intended to go. But if you were off by say just one degree, given enough travel time you would find yourself way off course. You might have planned for Alaska but ended up in Hawaii. What started off as an “in case something happens” benefit, over time became “it’s my right” – and in part, this waylaid course is due to semantics. What was once “hospitalization” eventually became “health” insurance.
Do We Mean Medical Insurance or Health Insurance?
I won’t open the can of worms debate about whether the government, and in reality, our tax dollars, should pay for everyone to have medical insurance, which has since been re-coined “health insurance,” until the semantics have been accurately defined. In reality, where the problem lies, and throws the debate way off course is, we are talking about two totally different things. The first implies medical insurance “in case something happens” the latter implies health care. And until this misuse of terminology is cleared up, the solution will not go well. If we were to look at the World Health Organizations definition of health (whom, by the way, dictates greatly to socialized medicine) “A state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity” we would understand what we are asking the government to do with our tax dollars – keep everyone healthy. Unfortunately, we are comparing apples to oranges in debates – medical insurance and health insurance are two totally different things. Let’s say what we mean.
Does it make sense for our collective tax dollars i.e. the government, pay to keep everyone healthy, when the majority of the people have no “buy in” to maintaining, or even restoring their body back to good health? Instead, what most people are desiring is disease management, not implementing any responsibility on their own part. It would be like giving a beautiful home to everyone, but not exercising discipline with the upkeep, and even with our budget to maintain the home, instead we would burn the house down because it no longer served its purpose like it once did. And then hold your hand out for another beautiful home and the government give you yet another one free of charge. Sounds ridiculous doesn’t it? Our bodies are the temple, the home of the most-high living God. The only difference with this comparison is there could potentially be another house, but we are only given one body in our lifetime here on earth, and it is our responsibility to be good stewards of it – not the government, not the employer, and certainly not the insurance company’s responsibility – it is ours.
The bottom line is this: “health” insurance is a misnomer.What we are actually still paying for is hospitalization to the hospitals, and “sick” care in the name of medical insurance, to the now monopolized medical conglomerates, under which the majority of medical physicians, by default, and even duress, are now practicing.
Now that we have defined what medical insurance really is, let’s ask that question again:
Should Medical Insurance Keep Me Healthy?
The answer is “no.” Let’s call a spade a spade. If you choose to pursue the path of disease management for yourself, then you should expect to pay for just that. And medical insurance covers that. However, since 70-80% of all chronic and degenerative diseases are self-induced due to the dietary and lifestyle choices we make every day, it should be your responsibility to pay for that coverage when you get sick and need care. It should not be the government’s responsibility, which in reality is everyone who pay taxes into the government. And it shouldn’t be your employer’s responsibility – which all of your co-workers indirectly pay for. It should be your responsibility. After all, it’s sick care you are paying for.
When you don’t do your best to take responsibility with your health, you are gambling that you will be hit with some kind of disease, requiring support from your medical insurance. It’s like someone buying a beautiful home right on the coast of Florida. There is a much greater likelihood that they will need flood insurance than someone living in the middle of the country miles away from water. You made the choice, you pay for it. Medical insurance will help you pay for the cost of managing your disease, not keep you healthy
How Insurance Falsely Promotes Itself
However, because insurance companies now call it “health” insurance, we are led to believe our insurance will, and in fact should, pay to keep us healthy. Hence, the cry for socialized medicine that “it’s a human being’s ‘right’ to be healthy” supports this belief. It is every human being’s right to be healthy, but only if someone else is preventing us from eating nutritious, real food, exercising, drinking our water, getting our proper sleep etc. is that right being taken away. In reality, the only person who is preventing these things from happening is ourselves.
Insurance companies even try and outdo their competitors by offering “well care plans,” “health screenings,” “vaccines,” and of course “prescriptions.” And let’s not overlook “long-term ‘health’ care.” I recently sat down with an insurance agent to discuss my Medicare coverage options for the first time – and all of these terms were thrown out to me as I was trying to decide one plan over the other. I felt like I was sitting in front of 6 different insurance companies, to whom our tax dollars, via Medicare, reimburse for their coverage of me with my hard-earned money, vying for my business using these misleading, enticing terms implying if I went with them I would live longer and healthier. Not. But in true socialized fashion, what these Medicare Advantage plans do offer are free gym memberships, a quarterly stipend to spend at their drugstore of choice – CVS in my area, and even an annual stipend for things like running shoes, hiking poles, fishing rods – you know, all the things we could do for our “health.” This all sounds great, I know it does to me – I can’t wait to be reimbursed for my next pair of hiking shoes.
But the saying “nothing is free” doesn’t stop at the doorstep of Medicare, someone – you and I — are paying for it. Of course, I plan to take full advantage of this, because if I have it my way, I’ll never utilize Medicare for hospitalizations, doctor visits or prescription drugs, I may as well get something out of the dollars I will be paying every month to our government. Wait. Isn’t this my money to begin with, that I have been paying into Medicare for the last 50 years, that is now supposed to support my potential medical needs in my golden years? Why am I paying for it again? Wonder what the cost would be if all of these “health” benefits weren’t provided? Better yet, wonder what the cost could be if we all did just a little bit better in taking responsibility with our health so we all wouldn’t have to tap into those limited resources so much? But I digress.
What Insurance Actually Covers
Let’s go behind the scenes first. Here is what is happening – follow the money with me a moment. The pharmaceutical companies rule. First, they fund the FDA and other government agencies greatly. They also pay big dollars to the media corporations through their advertising dollars. But their purpose for advertising isn’t to entice the consumer to “ask their doctor of drug ‘X’ is right for you” – no, the media is bought and paid for my big Pharma to say whatever the pharmaceutical industry wants them to say – basically, selling sickness.
The government regulates the medical insurance companies. Really, most insurance companies these days follow suit with what Medicare does or does not cover. If an insurance company wanted to cover say more extensive laboratory work in order to get to the root cause of the problem, and not just change lab values with a drug, they would be denied by the government, who is controlled by big Pharma. Therefore, the medical doctor’s hands are tied – they only order or perform procedures and surgeries that manage disease, not assist in a patient getting well i.e. no longer in need of drugs.
So, insurance companies put on their “happy face” by making it sound like they care about your health, when in reality, their hands are tied to only cover services that support disease management. They will promote that they do “well checks,” “screenings” “vaccines” and even offer gym memberships like Medicare does. On the surface it all sounds good, it sounds like they are helping you prevent disease – hence “health insurance.” But in reality, these services are a financial drop in the bucket for the insurance companies to put on their happy face but are really not providing health insurance, it’s still medical insurance all the way Will insurance keep you healthy? No, no it will not.
What Insurance Should Cover, But Does Not
As I went through my own functional medicine discovery process last year, trying to get to the root cause of some lab values being off – high blood platelets in particular – I had to utilize a conventional medical practitioner for a brief period of time, and then back to my functional medicine doctor. My “health” coverage was through a Christian health sharing account. As I became in need of their coverage, I read the fine print for the first time (do you ever do that too, read it after the fact? Sigh…), and I saw that they specifically stated they do not cover services provided by functional medicine practitioners. Why? How disappointing. These functional medicine practitioners are all about getting to the root cause of the problem, and then assisting the patient in restoring their body back to good health using natural approaches. I believe with all my heart this is the direction God wants us to take – He doesn’t want us to manage a disease He died on the cross to remove from us, He wants us to be good stewards of the only body He gave us. But apparently this Christian health company doesn’t see it that way. Perhaps they are purely ignorant of the value, knowledge, training and skill that functional medicine practitioners provide? Maybe they think because functional medicine practitioners utilize natural approaches this simply means recommending cheap, synthetic vitamins from the drug store? However, they could not be more wrong. See my blog “Does Wholistic Health Equate to Ineffective?” to learn what functional medicine is really all about.
And then there is the question of the conventional insurance companies providing coverage for functional medicine services. No, no they do not either. Because you see, this would mean there would be a much greater possibility that the patient would become well and no longer be in need of drugs for their chronic diseases the rest of their life. The insurance companies couldn’t have this, because the government who regulates them would say they couldn’t, because Big Pharma who provides them with billions of dollars every year says so. After all, where would Big Pharma and the government be if we were all healthy and well? Out of business, that’s where.
- Health insurance really is not there to help you take care of your health, so stop expecting them to do so – it’s your responsibility to do that.
- Medical insurance should be there “in case” something happens – out of the ordinary – not to cover the chronic degenerative diseases that are fully in our control to reverse.
- Follow the money – medical docs are controlled by the insurance companies, who are controlled by the government, who are controlled by big Pharma, who loses if you are healthy – follow the money.
- Insurance won’t keep you healthy, but YOU can – your health IS in your control. Be empowered by this knowledge.
- Plan your budget with funds to utilize for functional medicine practitioners when needed. In the end they will not only save you money, they just might save your life.
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